The recent report that Prozac may slow the development of brain lesions is the sort of news that maybe shouldn't be reported at all. It's so preliminary that it's of value almost exclusively to researchers. It appears to invite people with MS to consider taking Prozac to slow the disease. It shouldn't.
Three things you need to know:
1. The Dutch study was very small: 19 people with MS taking Prozac, 19 taking a placebo. Researchers used MRIs every four weeks to monitor development of brain inflammation. At eight weeks fewer new lesions appeared in patients taking Prozac; the difference was sustained for 24 weeks.
2. There was no difference in symptoms or exacerbations related to the two treatments during the tests. But side effects did show themselves: People taking Prozac had more drowsiness and nausea than those who took the placebo.
3. The bottom line here is that there is enough evidence to justify moving ahead with further studies of Prozac (and simila...
<p><strong>What Is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?</strong></p>
<p>Anxiety can be a natural, beneficial reaction to stress or danger. Under normal circumstances, anxiety diminishes when the stressful situation ends. But for some people, anxiety persists and serves no constructive purpose. In generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), a person experiences excessive, prolonged worry over everyday concerns, such as job responsibilities, health or family well-being, or even minor matters, such as household chores or personal appearance.</p>
<p>Along with worry itself, GAD may produce such physical symptoms as heart palpitations, sweating, headaches, and nausea. In addition, perpetual anxiety may impair concentration, memory, decision-making ability, and social functioning, such as maintaining intimate relationships or working. GAD is the most common anxiety disorder, affecting 3% of the population. Most people with GAD first have symptoms during young ad...
Medications Selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), or the serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) venlafaxine (Effexor, generic), are the primary first-line treatment for anxiety disorders. For patients who are not helped by these drugs or who need help rapidly, benzodiazepines may be prescribed, either alone or in combination with an antidepressant. Other types of antidepressants, including tricyclic antidepressants, may also be used to treat patients with severe or chronic forms of anxiety disorders. Drug therapies for anxiety disorders work best in combination with cognitive behavioral therapy or some other form of psychotherapy. Antidepressants Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). SSRIs include fluoxetine (Prozac, generic), sertraline (Zoloft, generic), paroxetine (Paxil, generic), fluvoxamine (Luvox, generic), citalopram (Celexa, generic), and escitalopram (Lexapro). SSRIs can cause agitation, nausea, and diarrhea. Sexual dysfunction, including lowered...
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